Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Business Advisor or Consultants role in Rural Entrepreneurship

By Matthew G. Soltis
As a business consultant you may have some thoughts as to how you may get involved with these communities and entrepreneurs. Through local and state non-profit organizations you can become very involved. Caution: the area you are about to enter should be accessed only after some study and introspection of your talents and time available. Most that enter become addicted. If you are determined to become involved please read and follow up with some of the programs that follow.
The Texas Center for Rural Entrepreneurship is a nonprofit 501(c)3 Texas corporation whose primary goal is to stimulate and support entrepreneurship in rural communities. This is accomplished through a virtual incubation system that provides education, information and technical assistance to entrepreneurs and community leaders and creating and growing businesses by connecting entrepreneurs and their communities with the capital, management and leadership resources they need to be successful
The Center’s vision is that of an entrepreneurial rural Texas, generating jobs, wealth, prosperity, and improved quality of life in dynamic and sustainable communities that are ensuring their heritage while fully participating in local, national, and international markets.

Entrepreneur Ready Communities
Entrepreneurs and the businesses they create represent the economic future of
rural communities. This is true whether the entrepreneurial ventures are new or
growing. Small startup companies at a minimum provide self employment, while
growing businesses often create a significant number of jobs.
The Center works with communities providing assessments, educational programs,
planning and other important elements of a program that leads to certification as an
Entrepreneur Ready Community.

Entrepreneur Guides
Individuals with an interest in supporting entrepreneurs in their community can
gain certification as an Entrepreneur Guide through our program. Criteria are posted on the web. They consist of participating in educational programs, providing technical assistance, offering educational programs and other activities.

Communities in Economic Transition
Consistent with active learning and action-oriented approaches, CET programs include:
• Community self-study and planning for economic diversification;
• Informational materials and technical assistance to help communities implement local plans;
• Local and inter-community workshops and discussion forums;
• Local and project progress monitoring;
• Networks of contacts with a wide variety of groups.
Rural Community Colleges Alliance
This alliance of colleges help rural communities:
Focus on their assets
Honestly assess and address community problems
Work to build broad-based leadership and an inclusive, collaborative civic culture
Build commitment to equity and excellence
Seek out new ideas and encourage a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship
Understand the inextricable link between education and economic prosperity, and work simultaneously to improve education and build the regional economy
RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship
The RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship provides communities across rural America with the resources for implementing entrepreneurship as a core economic development strategy.
The Center, located jointly in North Carolina, Nebraska, and Missouri, applies practice-driven research, development tools, and consultation services in participation with many partners – rural communities, development practitioners, researchers, and policymakers.
The Center's mission is to enable every rural resident to achieve his or her full entrepreneurial potential. To achieve this mission, the Center's work focuses on three key concepts – study, learn, and engage. T
The Center actively studies entrepreneurship development through practice-driven research in collaboration with a wide range of partners. Building on this knowledge base, the Center creates opportunities for community leaders and policy makers to learn about rural entrepreneurship through training, an electronic newsletter, development tools, and other mechanisms for learning in person and virtually.
The Center also engages community and regional leaders by bringing new models, such as Hometown Competitiveness, and new tools, such as Transfer of Wealth, directly to rural regions in a more hands-on, strategic approach. By applying these three concepts, the Center is committed to connecting economic development practitioners and policy makers across rural America to the resources needed to energize entrepreneurs and to implement entrepreneurship as a core rural economic development strategy.


Greg Clary, PhD
Economist, Texas AgriLife Extension Service
Chairman, Texas Center for Rural Entrepreneurship
Extension Economist: Greg is primarily responsible for continuing education and leadership in rural entrepreneurship and economic development, in business capitalization, and in rural business management. This includes providing educational programs and technical assistance on management issues such as business planning; feasibility analysis; implementing, and evaluating production and operations methods; budgeting; developing and evaluating marketing alternatives; value-added business opportunities; financial management; and business performance analysis. It also includes developing and working with collaborations and communities supporting rural entrepreneurs and local economic development.
Chairman of the Board, the Texas Center for Rural Entrepreneurship (TCRE
Greg Clary, PhD, Chairman

M.G.Soltis, Author                                                                                                                                                                    MAGUConsultancy for Entrepreneurs   
214 763-1433                                                                                               
Please submit a brief on your Business Consulting experience if you have an interest in working with the Texas entrepreneur.

Don Macke 1s Director of Strategic Engagement and the Center’s Project Director for HomeTown Competitiveness, a partnership between the Nebraska Community Foundation, the RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship, and the Heartland Center for Leadership Development. Don was a founding co-director of the RUPRI Center in 2001. Don’s role is to lead the Center’s efforts to support practitioners working in their landscapes to build entrepreneurship development systems and programs, including one-on-one mentoring, training and strategic planning. Don brings to the Center’s work over 30 years experience in rural community economic development as a practitioner at the state, regional and local levels.
Copyright © 2010 Materials on the public portions of this site may be used with appropriate attribution to the RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship.

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